Originally opened on Derby Day in 1935 and reopened to the public in 2014, the Stitzel-Weller Distillery is one of the true cathedrals of the American whiskey industry. Located only five miles from downtown Louisville, the Bulleit Frontier Whiskey Experience is one of the most convenient and impressive along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
3860 Fitzgerald Rd.
Louisville, KY 40216
Distilled spirits have been a part of southwest Louisville for quite some time. Illegal moonshining has a rich and notorious history in Kentucky and the South Points Scenic Area is rumored to have had its fair share. The swampy and hilly areas south of Louisville were able to provide camouflage and ensure privacy. Moonshining had been documented in the wet woods by Jacob Niles who tells a story of local moonshiner whose best customer owned a local tavern and kept bottles of his product in a gunny sack submerged in a nearby pond. When a customer entered the tavern and let their secret preference be known, the owner would say to his assistant, “Oppie, take a walk.” his was the signal for retrieving a pint. If he said, “Oppie take two walks,” he came back with a quart.
Legal bourbon distilling has a very strong connection to southwest Louisville. In the early 1900s the Pleasure Ridge Park Distillery produced 10,000 gallons of bourbon daily, making the brands “Old Pepper Springs”, “Old Times”, and “Aristocrat Rye.” The only vestige of the distillery is a street named “Railroad Avenue” off Greenwood Road near Dixie Highway that connected a railroad spur to the distillery. After prohibition (1920-1933) eight distilleries opened in the Shively area.
One, the Stitzel-Weller Distillery, opened on Derby Day in 1935 and for decades it was known for making some of the very finest bourbon available. It was originally operated by Julian P. Van Winkle, Alex T. Farnsley, and A. Ph. Stitzel. In 2014, Stitzel-Weller reopened to the public as the home for Bulleit Frontier Whiskey. Located only five miles from downtown Louisville, the Bulleit Experience at Stitzel-Weller is one of the most convenient and impressive along the Kentucky Bourbon Trail: http://bulleitexperience.com